For the last week or so, the D.C. metropolitan area has been covered and overwhelmed with snow. In the past seven days there have been three snowstorms; two were considered blizzards.
Other cities in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast region have also had quite a bit of snow. I have to admit, watching the snowfall and seeing the still beauty as it coats the landscape is breaktaking. The other breaktaking thing about the snow is shoveling the snow- it can be quite strenuous exercise!
Shoveling out my Grammy's house and driveway were certainly a workout. Luckily, I have lived in very snowy places like Chicago, Ill. and Bridgeport, Conn., so I have been schooled in the correct posture and positions for shoveling. I was taught by the experts to use my legs by bending down (and not my back) to shovel snow.
Since shoveling snow is considered exercise it is a good idea to do some stretching before you go outside to start digging out. It is great exercise for people of all ages; even healthy and fit young people can get their blood pumping after just a few minutes. If you have any restrictions related to exercise it is always a good idea to check with your doctor to make sure shoveling will not cause you to over exert yourself. It might seem silly to call your doctor, but since we had so much snow on the East Coast, the call is important if you have restrictions.
Shoveling snow is considered cardiovascular exercise, as well as weight lifting exercise. This makes it a great form of functional exercise. You end up releasing cortisol, epinephrine, norepinephrine, growth hormones, insulin-like growth factor 1, (IGF-1), which are all are released when you do other forms of moderate exercise.
So as I was slowly digging my way out of the house this week, I kept saying to myself, "this is wonderful exercise and I am doing my body good." I do have to admit I loved the crisp winter air- and there is no other way that I would have spent as much time outside if I was not digging out!
I found a way to stay healthy and get ready for work at the same time.
Dr. Dae's website: www.healthydaes.com